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Old March 26 2013, 12:50 AM   #36
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Re: Joel Revisits TOS....

Joel_Kirk wrote: View Post
The Enemy Within

Story: While surveying planet Alpha 177, the Enterprise runs into transporter trouble, which results in a Kirk-double appearing after the “real” Kirk beams up. Unfortunately, this transporter trouble prevents a landing party - led by Sulu - to be beamed aboard, and planet Alpha’s temperature is dropping, and the Kirk-double is wreaking havoc aboard the Enterprise.

Themes/Ideology: Everyone has a good and bad side, and both sides have to co-exist for a person to be whole. We all have an ‘enemy within,’ which our conscience keeps at bay, save those times when we need to let our rage out.

Plot Holes: Spock, without any investigation, automatically comes to the conclusion that there is an imposter on board the ship when members of the crew accuse Kirk of uncharacteristic actions. Granted, they may have some sort of camaraderie, but this crew is ‘exploring strange new worlds and new civilizations.’ Kirk might have gone - to coin a term from one of the episodes - ‘space happy’ or a myriad of other things, as well as be an imposter. For the sake of safety (and logic) I would think Spock would have ordered Kirk to remain in his quarters until a full investigation was completed (which would eventually flush out the Kirk-double).

Miscellaneous Thoughts: Spock jokes about the attempted rape on Janice Rand, as sexism rears its ugly head in the original series. He - Spock - doesn’t seem to be on his game in this episode; he acts....illogically.

The story (and additional stakes) don’t really pick until halfway, but it - the episode - still comes off as entertaining: The ‘real’ Kirk is slowing down because his risk-taking, more aggressive side is part of the fully ‘evil’ Kirk...who is, as aforementioned, wreaking havoc....and attempting to rape a certain female yeoman he has been lusting for; and, also aforementioned, there is a landing party that needs to be beamed aboard before they freeze to death.

Shatner, as his ‘evil’ self, is over-the-top, but it works for the character: The ‘evil’ Kirk is indeed less patient, and more aggressive....and with so much aggression, doesn’t seem to have a purpose than to cause trouble because he has no direction. On the other hand, Shatner’s ‘real’ Kirk (without his ‘bad side’) is more reserved, patient, and slow.

A couple of side-notes: We have Johnny Farrell as navigator returning from “Mudd’s Women.” Also, I don’t think Zoe Saldana’s Uhura would have put up with aggressive Kirk; she would have had a phaser ready on stun....and gave Spock an earful on handling his business.

My initial score for “The Enemy Within” was 3.33/5....but I’m dropping it to 3.25/5.

Next episode to be reviewed: “The Man Trap.”
Yes there are strains of sexism running through TOS, it's a mixed bag, but there is at least an attempt to get it right. There is an inordinate amount of women "professionals" and experts in the series. I think Gene Roddenberry actually apologized later on the 70s and 80s (in at least one interview and biography I saw) for many of those lines however.

This is one of TV's better Jekyll and Hide stories, though to be a contrarian seems as if a lot of the instincts, emotional reactions, and primitive nature of some of our baser individual and cultural reactions are based on the older parts of the brain, some if not all were adapted at a time when man was more primitive and needed quick, efficient responses to danger and stimuli in the natural world, the body simply built over these it really necessary that we need these to survive? In fact today many of the ancient drives hinder rather than help us. This might be an argument for tinkering with the brain, which we are more capable of doing every year, at some point we may decide to expunge such limiting thought processes. TOS and ST in general is probably much too critical of genetic manipulation and what we know of now as transhumanism.
"Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities".
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